Day 269: Scurdie Ness to Monifieth

Distance: 28.81 miles

Ascent: 2040 feet

Weather: 2 hours Heavy Rain Otherwise Sunny Spells

Accommodation: Tayview Caravan Park (Kindly Complimentary)


I had slept like a log beneath the lighthouse and was up and off fairly early. The weather forecast was not great but not too bad, it was meant to be dry with sunny spells both early morning and late afternoon but there was meant to be fairly heavy rain from 11/12 to 2pm. Today as per the next 3 days will be extended as I am meeting friends on my next rest day near Edinburgh and I had not comprehended how much distance of coast surrounds Edinburgh but the place booked is maybe 15 miles further than my scheduled point so I am trying to incorporate this extra 15 miles over the next 4/5 days.

I followed the edge of the cliff beyond the lighthouse firstly to Mains of Usan which had a couple of ruins, one of which much of been a chapel as it was quite ornate inside, and then onto Usan itself where the main farm was in the middle of its potato harvest. From here I followed a quiet lane for 3 miles or so to Lunan. On this stretch I bumped into a red squirrel who appeared to be getting berries or seeds out of the ditch on one side of the road and then burying them in the ditch on the other side. I watched him for a few minutes before he noticed me and scuttled off.

At Lunan you can actually access the long sandy beach but there is a river that might have been an issue to cross so I continued on the road for a few hundred meters until I was across the river and then climbed up passed an impressive ruined castle before dropping down onto the beach. This was a lovely beach the only issue being that there was a fairly strong headwind which was smashing the sand straight into my face. After my sand blast facial I reached the end of the beach and there was a quirky little hamlet (Corbie Knowe) right on the front with a hodge podge of ramshackle buildings and caravans, I strangely quite liked its appearance.

I had thought the next short bit might be off piste but it turns out Angus has a coast path even if it is not shown on the map or even my core path map. But it turned out it took exactly the same route I had plotted, climbing from the beach up onto the cliffs and then a farm track to North Mains. When I got to North Mains it was about 11 and on turning around it was clear rain would arrive soon, so I got fully waterproofed up and carried on.

There were several miles of farm tracks to Auchmithie which could have been quite nice but the heavens absolutely opened and didn’t stop for a couple of hours. From Auchmithie there was a clifftop gravelled path which was excellently done all the way to Arbroath. This was such a nice path and I am sure the views were stunning but with the heavy rain came a murk that obscured a lot of the view.

Finally, I descended towards Arbroath, and as per the forecast the rain was beginning to stop at 2 when I got there. Soaked through and noticing Arbroath had a Morrisons, I headed there and used one of my vouchers to get a hot meal and stocked up on supplies for this evening and tomorrow morning. It felt great being in the warm and dry.

The rain had fully stopped when I left and a flat cycleway took me the few miles to Carnoustie. I passed the golf club and course which looked like it had just hosted a tournament as they were taking down lots of marquees and other paraphernalia. This was another perfectly flat course which I am sure is nice to play but looked very boring.

There is a military range between Carnoustie and Monifieth so I took the cycleway between them. It had been a long day and the sun was almost fully set when I finally arrived at Tayview Caravan Park. They had kindly via email offered to let me stay free of charge, but no one was there when I arrived and I wasn’t sure where I could pitch as there were statics everywhere. At the far end I found a patch of grass and assumed this must be for tents and no one complained. Fortunately it had been dry for the last few hours so a lot of stuff had dried out.

A long day, made a bit tougher by the wind and rain.

NB - Due to the rain I only took 12 photos in total so they are all used.

charles compton